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Super Magnetic Neo
  opened by paleface at 06:21:23 09/04/05  
  paleface [sys=DC; cat=Platformer; loc=NA]
Genki, at least these days, isn't known for quirky, cutesy platformers, but they made or at least published one here. SMN's magnet-headed hero can magnetically charge his head along two wavelengths, red and blue. Red and blue pads infest the usual kinds of 3D platformy worlds, and he uses them to navigate the world--pulse your red magnetic power near a red pad, and you shoot off in the opposite direction; pulse blue near red, and you stick to it. Vice-versa with blue pads. The red/blue colors corresponds to the colors of the appropriate buttons on the DC pad.
Simple, but I can't seem to get the hang of it--I guess I'm bad at button-to-color matching on the fly. 'Cause of course the game gives you sequences where you have to alternate red/blue in a certain pattern to bounce Neo through an area, and, blah, somehow it just doesn't come intuitively to me, and I always hit the wrong color, and then he dies or at least looks stupid and has to go back to the beginning of the sequence to try again.
I did hit one long sequence right, though, and managed to shoot through most of a level in one fell swoop, swinging off magnetic pulleys and skipping across the heads of multiple bad guys. That felt kinda good, but it also felt like I sort of whizzed by a lot of stuff without being able to see it exactly--like a Sonic game or something. And that always leaves me feeling somewhat unsatisfied. You can try collecting little coins and things scattered around the levels, but I'm not sure why.
The camera stinks. You have no control over it, really, and it likes to dip kinda low--low enough that you might plunge into a narrow death pit in your path because the camera was too low for you to see and avoid it in time as you ran along. Boo.
The levels are reasonably pretty, and the music sorta groovy. The baddies don't look like too much, and don't seem to do much, really. What with that and similar-looking red and blue pads everywhere, the game can feel kinda samey easily.
Aside from story mode, you can try a challenge-mode type of thing, where you get Neo across bottomless pits using pads of various configurations, with a pretty steep time-limit. These tiny stages amount to individual platform puzzles, and pretty much seem to consist of: jump on first panel, propel yourself off it magnetically to the next panel, repeat. Yawnzors.
It's yet another 3D platformer with a cute schtick, and I can't manage the schtick very well. Seeing as how the rest of the game isn't all that remarkable, I can't see myself being too interested in playing this again.

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